When your instructor says "scholarly journals" or "credible journalistic sources," she likely mean articles written by a professional in your field of study, intended for other professionals in that field, and published in a venue that professionals in the field use. Professional articles are also called peer-reviewed articles.
Peer-reviewed articles are published with the intent of sharing new research and information from specialized fields with researchers, practitioners, and students. The process of peer review helps to ensure that each published article is unique, accurate, credible, and objective. Peer-reviewed articles can be published in various venues - print journals, online journals, and academic and research organizations’ websites.
Peer-reviewed articles inform other scholars and students in higher education of new research and findings. They are meant to teach and share information, not entertain or sell things.
Evaluating information is especially important when completing projects and assignments in college (and at work!) because you will be evaluated on the quality of sources you use. The CRAP Test is a helpful tool to use when deciding if a source is "good." CRAP stands for Currency, Reliability, Authority and Purpose.
When you evaluate a source, consider these four concepts by asking yourself a few questions about each.
Purpose / Point of View
CRAP Test adapted from Beestrum, M., & Orenic, K. (2008). The CRAP test. Available from http://commons.emich.edu
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